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Old September 4, 1999, 11:41 PM   #1
Bob S
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Hello everyone, I usually dont frequent the reloaders forum, usually I can be found in Handguns or Rifles... but today I REALLY need some reloading advice, so I thought I'd come ask the reloading pros in hopes of finding some help.

I recently bought a Marlin 336cs in 30-30. I do reload a little, but only for .38 special and 9mm handgun. My equipment is Very Cheap. I have a Lee hand press, two sets of dies (38 and 9mm), I even use lee powder scoops in place of a scale (I picked up whole set of these scoops used at a gun show for $5) Will I need any special equipment to get started loading 30-30??

I realize I need the dies for 30-30, which type is best?

Does 30-30 use the same size primers as handgun cartriges? Can I get away with loading the same powder?

As you can see, I'm not a serious reloader, but If I can pick up just a few additional items and be able to load 30-30, that would be a Huge Help!! Feel free to tell me any thing I need to know before I go out and buy the dies! Thanks in advance for your replies.
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Old September 5, 1999, 01:32 AM   #2
Grayfox
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The first thing you need is a good reloading manual. Guess work don't cut it and I've never really trusted those scoops. Definatly get a powder scale.
Along with dies, you'll need case lube and probably a lube pad.
Rifle and pistol primers are different and shouldn't be interchanged. Also check the manual to be sure, but off hand I can't think of any pistol powders that will work in the 30-30.
The real point of reloading is to find the right powder/bullet combination that works best in your gun. Be prepared to try several of each until you find what your rifle likes.
The 30-30 is a fine cartridge, but it does have one quirk you need to be aware of. It is a very old case design and is somewhat thin walled. If you apply just a little too much crimp, the case will bulge just below the shoulder and won't chamber in the rifle. So be very careful when setting the crimp die.
You're on the right track. Reloading is an enjoyable and rewarding hobby in itself. First read the book, then get yourself some decent equiptment, if possible, find an experienced reloader to show you how to do it right.
Welcome to the club.
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Old September 5, 1999, 05:37 AM   #3
Colduglandon
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If you use the scoops pick up the Lee manual. I use them all the time for rifle loads, but I use a scale from time to time to check the poweder measure I am getting. If the technique you use with the scoop varies it can cause the amount of powder to vary as well especially with extruded powder. The Lee dies are a good choice because they include the factory crimp die which is beneficial when you are using a tubular magazine. Check Wideners for bullets. They have had good specials on Winchester 150 grain round nose bullets in the past.
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Old September 5, 1999, 09:54 PM   #4
Big Bunny
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Yes, I use the Lee Dippers for low volume shotgun and rifle re-loading.While considered a bit retro by the cognocenti - I love them!
They are designed to have a safety margin of around 10% built in, but please follow the instructions EXACTLY and start 10% low and build up to it in YOUR rifle until the desired result is obtained .
I also load W30/30 in the field when needed (on my Land Rover tow-bar) using a Lee 30/30W 'Lee Loader', also 410 and 12GA shotgun, 303BR, 6.5x55 Swedish and 308W. They are great for "survivalist" reloading, but follow the instructions to the letter.
I also have a powder scale now, 4x reloading manuals and a set of full heavy press dies for all of these calibres as well.(So why do I use Lee?...well-I will add to that after this)...
(1)Make sure your S\H Lee Dippers are original and not- EG- out of another kit or swapped and also clean internally.
(2)Make sure your cardboard slide-chart of all the powders is compatible with the dippers!
(3) Get some large rifle primers(I prefer Winchester) and bluntish .308 projectiles and go for it! It is a bit like tying your own flies for trout fishing, really mind-bendingly satisfying.
Sure... be careful and take all the precautions and wear eye protection etc, but do NOT be frightened off reloading(or more accurately ammo assembling)for years, as I did!I now regret this, but unfortunately only started in 1990 with the 410 3" due to only 17c each reloaded Vs 80c(imported from USA) from a shop!Then came 12GA 3"mag for the same reasons and then...30/30W !
(4)Join a club and\or get a mate to check your powder weights to give you peace of mind, and ensure you keep primers clean and check for duff cases etc etc.
Funnily enough Lee(from memory) do not recommend lubrication, probably it causes more problems than it solves for neck sizing only. I use a dab of castor oil from the medical pouch every 5 rounds or so on the neck. After 7(or less) rounds or so the ammo will get sticky on extraction. You will need a Full Length vice-die to re-size or have a mate do it for you on a full-sized press.
A "soft-faced" hammer is recommended with the Lee Loader to stop rod and die damage, but in emergencies any hard object will do!
(Bear in mind, in the event of reloading and component supply bans by a future state or federal government(as in UK now and Oz perhaps tomorrow?), it is easier to store/conceal a Lee Loader(half the size of a paperback novel) or a Lyman tong-tool(amongst other tools in your tool box) than a full-sized press.....even a small one... [Ahem,wink]...Have fun!



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Old September 6, 1999, 01:20 PM   #5
Paul B.
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Big Bunny. Wise words and an interesting post. I have an old conversion unit that makes an electric hand drill into a drill press. I found it in a pile of junk my late father was throwing out. I figured I might find a drill that fit it. No such luck.
When I used my Lee Loader dies, I would neck size by putting the unit in a vise, and turn it down. One day, I was looking at the drill press system, and wondering what to do with it. All of a sudden a bright light. Use it as an arbor press. By adjusting the height for each operation, I can do all the functions of a regular press, without banging everything with a hammer. I never was very comfortable with beating on it to seat primers. I've had a few go off, it I happened to get too enthusiastic. ( )
It is also a lot less tiring if you are doing a couple of hundred rounds at one time.
I just thought I'd pass that along, in case you'd like to try it.
Paul B.
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Old September 6, 1999, 10:05 PM   #6
Big Bunny
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Paul, that is a good idea, thanks for sharing it.The moral is...never throw anything away !
I have had a few primers go off too, but mainly due to poor primer pocket swaging(berdan for ex-MIL)or poor placement on the anvil by myself. Inside the very protective die you can hardly hear it, but gets a bit warm and is very dirty to clean up!
Some de-luxe Lee Loader kits include a little priming tool with fixed shell-holder. Could be worthwhile though a bit tedious and not as good as the magazine load Lee Auto-Prime of course.


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Old September 7, 1999, 05:50 PM   #7
Paul B.
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BB. You know that hand primer seater that has the tray that Lee sells? I got 2. One for small primers and the other for large. I really like those and use them for almost all my priming needs. The rounds I don't use them on are few, but I just haven't gotten the shell holders yet. Try'em, you'll like'em
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Old September 7, 1999, 07:03 PM   #8
Big Bunny
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Yes Paul, I have them too. A good setup and sensitive too.
It is far cheaper to buy a set of Lee priming tool shell-holders than buying as needed individually. (Here they are AUD$8 each now)!
But a whole SET in a platic see-through box is advertised at only $US15 in a BassPro catalogue, I suppose you get a lot of surplus ones... but it is FAR cheaper.

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